Rural Health Information Hub Latest News

Study Results: Coverage is Critical for Reducing Dental-Related ER Use

A recent study from Community Catalyst highlights the relationship between Medicaid coverage and ER visits for oral health issues. The study found that states that offer Medicaid adult dental benefits and that have expanded their Medicaid programs under the ACA have the lowest rates of dental-related ER use. States that have taken up both of these policy options have also shown a decrease in dental-related ER use over time.

Click here for more information.

New Report: Ventilator-Assisted Pneumonia and the Mouth

A new report from the DentaQuest Partnership looks at the connection between oral health and overall health and further examines ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP). The report asserts that addressing social conditions, structural racism, access to care, oral health education and other factors may not only improve oral health outcomes but also reduce the risk for COVID-19, VAP and even death in Black communities.

Click here to read the full report.

Gateway Health to Implement Expanded Oral Health Service Credentialing

Gateway Health has implemented Public Health Dental Hygiene Practitioner (PHDHP) credentialing and network participation. This opportunity will increase access to care for patients in Pennsylvania. For background, the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services released a bulletin in 2017 recognizing PHDHPs as providers able to be credentialed and contracted through managed care organizations. The role of dental hygienists across the nation has evolved due to the lack of cost-effective access to preventive oral health care and the need to increase oral health literacy across the nation.

Contact Holly Kauffman for more information or to request an application.

Celebrate 75 Years of Community Water Fluoridation

The American Public Health Association (APHA) and the American Dental Association (ADA) are hosting “A Toast to Community Water Fluoridation – Celebrating 75 Years!” on Sunday, October 25th at 7 p.m. ET. This celebration will serve as an opportunity to highlight the inspiring perseverance of public health partners across the country. There are multiple featured speakers including Rear Admiral Assistant Surgeon General Timothy Ricks.

Click here for more information and to register.

FDA Issues Updates on Dental Amalgam

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) provided updated recommendations on Sept. 24, 2020 about the use of dental amalgam. The information potentially has a large impact on dentistry and public health dental programs. For more information, visit these links:

However, the American Dental Association (ADA) News reported on Sept. 24, 2020 that the ADA “reaffirmed its position that dental amalgam is a ‘durable, safe and effective’ restorative material in response to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Sept. 24 statement that existing evidence shows that dental amalgam is not harmful to the general population and treatment options should be thoroughly discussed by the patient and dentist.”

University of Pittsburgh Launches HRSA Opioid Training Module

The HRSA Opioid Training Module, “Acute Pain Management Strategies,” was developed at the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine with funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration (PI Dr. Robert Weyant, Co-PI Dr. Deborah Studen-Pavlovich). Content expert Dr. Paul Moore is a dentist, pharmacologist, anesthesiologist, and public health expert who has published over 250 articles in peer reviewed journals and has presented more than 150 invited lectures around the world. He is a renowned expert on local anesthetics, antibiotics, analgesics, sedation, drug interactions, and oral complications of diabetes. In this video, Dr. Moore shares his expertise in acute pain management strategies, responsible opioid prescribing, and alternatives to the routine use of opioids in dentistry.

Click here to watch the video.

Protecting Dental Health Benefits in Pennsylvania

As part of the Pennsylvania Coalition for Oral Health’s (PCOH) adult dental benefit campaign, we are launching some advocacy this fall to protect dental benefits in the state. Working with our consultant, Denny Civic Solutions, and Achieva, we have created a one-pager to use during our communications with decision-makers. If your personal organization or another organization that you are involved in would like to add your logo to the second page of this document, please click the link below no later than Wednesday, September 30th.

We appreciate the consideration.

Click here to download the one-pager.
Click here to contact PCOH to add your logo.



Child Oral Health Resource Center Releases New Resources

The National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center (OHRC) released three new resources focusing on the Title V national performance measure on oral health. The first resource, “Title V National Performance Measure 13 (Oral Health): Strategies for Success (2nd ed.),” provides information to help state maternal and child health programs in their implementation of the Title V NPM 13 and oral-health-related state performance measures. The other two resources are infographics that provide information for oral health professionals about benefits of and barriers to preventive dental visits for pregnant women and children.

Click here to view the resources.

Oral Health Value-Based Care: The FQHC Story

Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) are remaking modern health care with an integrated oral health care approach. Health centers and their dental programs are using telehealth and implementing value-based tools for prevention, creating better disease management and positive patient oral health and overall health outcomes. A recently released white paper, Oral Health Value-Based Care: The FQHC Story, from the DentaQuest Partnership and NACHC explores how.